Alice Springsʼ Lasseters Camel Cup is an amazing race that is iconic, quirky and its reputation reaches far beyond Northern Territory soil. The Cup is held annually on the 2nd Saturday in July in its own arena at Blatherskite Park, a section of the Central Australian Show Society grounds.
The family and fundraiser event is well known for its unpredictable and very entertaining camels as well as the brave and crazy riders.
With camels supplied by Camels Australia and Dennis Orr Camels - the Lasseters Camel Cup attracts around 5,000 people from all over the world.
While camels may have a reputation as dedicated 'ships of the desert', these magnificent beasts are certainly not short on personality. Racing them can prove a nightmare for riders and handlers but fantastic viewing for spectators. Entertainment is assured, with nine unique races scheduled around the dusty outback track throughout the day.
There will be lots of action between races, too. Belly dancers, rickshaw races, 'Kids Camel Capers' hobby camel races, rides, Mr and Miss Camel Cup challenges, food stalls and bars will add to the carnival atmosphere.
The Rickshaw Races are sure to be a barrel of laughs. Two people start off sitting in these people powered machines and two intrepid runners will pull them to the half–waypoint. They then swap and the pullers become the pulled. Numbers are limited for this fun event. Teams of 4 need to enter, on a first come first served basis. Entry is totally free and there is even some prize money on offer!
The hilarious honeymoon handicap is one of the highlights on the annual program. The Camels start as in a normal race – however half way around the track, the Camel (and new husband aboard) must stop and pick up their new Brides and then proceed to the finish line in normal race fashion. (Brides be sure you get the right husband!)
Since 2012 the Lasseters Camel Cup is run by APEX Club of Alice Springs with assistance of the Lions Clubs of Central Australia, and supported by other Alice Springs service clubs.
All proceeds from the day are distributed to local charities through the community grant scheme.